Pride Toronto has reimagined Pride Month for 2021, with a new Phygital festival model that showcases Toronto’s 2SLGBTQ+ communities and prioritizes hyper-localized community-driven events.
Pride Toronto is celebrating its 40th Anniversary and as we look back at the key moments in our 40 year history, we also look at the future and the present. 2SLGBTQ+ communities continue to be among the most vulnerable in Canada and hardest hit during the pandemic, especially Indigenous and racialized people. We seek to support as many artists in our community as possible, which is why we have been expanding to support not just performing artists, but visual artists too.
This project includes 8 visual art installations by 13 artists in 5 different locations around Toronto. The works selected all look at our 2SLGBTQ+ histories with a critical lens. They seek to educate, enlighten and provoke thought about our queer history, and present radical futures. These placemaking installations focus on queer elders, youth and marginalized communities. They act as a mode of reflection and celebration!
Art Installation Addresses
Hosted at stackt market – 28 Bathurst St
Artist Statements and Bio
My work explores how the non-human and inanimate world shapes our social, political, cultural, and ecological landscape, in co-authorship with the human and animate world. The subject matter for my current body of work came to me while staying in a stone cabin. I started each morning by collecting kindling and lighting a fire in the wood stove, and soon came to see the pieces of wood, newspaper, burnable objects, and ash as triangular compositions suitable for painting. The fireplace became an allegory, a still life, for the assemblages of our geological landscape – where the narrative of danger and comfort is contingent on the materiality of the object, its relationship to space, and the process of fire it will eventually endure.
Ness Lee’s work is an investigation of the human form dealing with notions of intimacy and self-love. Rather than the emphasis on the physical form, the emotional resonance and presence is brought to focus in periods of vulnerability, discomfort and acceptance. Using various mediums, she explores and echoes these emotions, encompassing its tactile experience into one that is filled with a depth of feeling, playing on humourous rhythms and self-exploration
“A reflection on the invisible”, is a discussion about the unseen.
Daylight renders this mirror sculpture almost invisible. It reflects people and their environment and in a way, fades into its surroundings. At night, the semi-transparent two-way mirror doesn’t reflect as much, thus letting the inner lighting define the shape of the sculpture.
The dichotomy of night and day symbolizes how ostracized people might choose to camouflage into society by reflecting what it wants to see.
The sculptural shape of this polygonal installation reverences the vulva. Large in size, it is staged as an imposing yet graceful monolith, defying society’s oppression and inculcating respect.
Studio Venn Studio is a queer-led Toronto-based art collaboration co-founded by Rob Shostak and Dionisios Vriniotis. Their practice explores abstractions of history and memory and a curiosity about recall as it relates to the environment and experience.You can find them on Instagram @StudioVennStudio
Return, Seek, Carry is a growing body of work documenting elder 2SLGBTQIA+ people through portraiture and oral histories. These works witness the lasting cultural, social, and political contributions of queer, trans*, and gender expansive elders, ensuring that their lived experiences and insights remain visible and accessible to future generations. This project aims to act as a catalyst for conversations between past and present, with the hope of building intergenerational community through reciprocal learning. In listening to one another we can discover possibilities, and imagine futures in which we thrive together.
The Invisible Majority is a body work created by Toronto based photographer/visual artist/storyteller Zahra Siddiqui. This series is meant to speak on the consciousness and civilization of our society. It’s meant to honour the existence of Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, 2SLGBTQ+ and those who lack visibility and representation. I hope these portraits will impact and force future generations to ask “Why did she only photograph people of colour? What was happening for her to focus on these groups of people? Why does she call them The Invisible Majority?”.
No Skateboarding is a month-long pop-up mini ramp installation at stackt market that asks us to reimagine our relationship to art, creation and destruction. The juxtaposition of a built to skate feature, and the presence of No Skateboarding signs, lends itself to a human curiosity, while commenting on the perceived immutable nature of passive, hostile signage. Built by the DIY Skate Toronto Community and painted by Tea Base in residency with the MOCA. No Skateboarding will invite people to interact through familiar colorful design, as homage to MOCA’s current exhibition, Michael Lin’s Archipelago.